2016

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Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
2016
SoftPlan Version:
2016 Plus

Every once in awhile I get a reminder of just how far SoftPlan has advanced in the past few years. This weekend I was helping a high school student in Canada who is learning SoftPlan at school. The school uses SoftPlan 14 and she had a challenging roof problem she asked me to help her with. Going back to version 14 was interesting because I had forgotten just how much has changed. I couldn't just switch from drawing to drawing using tabs. I had to close one drawing and open the other. And lots of tools had been moved around or didn't even exist back then. So much was different it was almost like using a totally foreign program. The difference between version 14 and 2016 is almost as drastic as the difference between DOS and Windows. I am thankful that SoftPlan has continued to innovate and improve their product over the years and I am looking forward to what the future holds.

Bill is the owner and maintainer of SoftPlanTuts.com

yvongonthier
yvongonthier's picture
Improvements

Good point Bill.

Presently, I have 2014 and 2012 at home and when I had to go back to 2012, it's surprising how with just one version how you feel loss and how strange it is to go backwards.

Looking forward to 2016.

ChrisStewart
ChrisStewart's picture
Yeah that was a good

Yeah that was a good improvement,  however I am in the process of dropping 2016 because there is just not much there that I consider to be worth the 900 upgrade cost.

I will miss the center between command though. 

yvongonthier
yvongonthier's picture
Going back

Where you with the regular Softplan 2014 or Softplan 2014+?

What happens if you have the + and stop? Do you go back to the last regular version that you had?

ChrisStewart
ChrisStewart's picture
Yes, you just go back to the

Yes, you just go back to the last full paid version.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
2016

There are tons if improvements in 2016 I use all the time.

  • Drag and drop rearrangement of table rows and columns
  • Vastly improved Building Options that make using Building Options really usable for the first time when using many complex interrelated options
  • The ability to set different Building Options for each item on a Plan Set page
  • Excellent integration between SoftPlan and Sketchup. For the first time ever since I started using SoftPlan I can now create 3D models that do not get triangulated in 3D and elevations. SoftPlan also recognizes "hidden" lines so for the first time ever smooth curved objects can be imported and display correctly. I can also export to Sketchup and all the faces remain in the proper orientation and without any triangulation. This is HUGE for anyone who uses SoftPlan and Sketchup together.
  • Automatic Presentation Views
  • Export Plan Sets to DWG
  • Automatic labels and scale in Plan Sets
  • Better handling of missing drawings in Plan Sets
  • Plan Set Templates
  • 3D Mouse support
  • Rounding for Areas
  • Automatically set countertops to Print
  • Dimension and extension options for Posts
  • Electrical connection "jumps"
  • First Joist Spacing setting
  • Dutch Gable overhang settings
  • The ability to edit walls in Roof Mode
  • Center of Arc display
  • Undo polygon segments one at a time rather than having to start over
  • Maintain aspect ratio when editing the size of symbols
  • Improved cabinet layout definitions
  • Search tags for Symbols

These are just some of the things I can think of off the top of my head. The list goes on and on of improvements in 2016 I use all the time.

yvongonthier
yvongonthier's picture
2016

Thanks Bill, that helps a lot.

We're still debating if we should upgrade to the regular Softplan 2016 or 2016+

It's just the fact of being attached to the program restrictions that makes us question if we should go to + or not. What do you think?

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Plus

I would definitely go with Plus. Here is a video describing some of the benefits of Plus. The video is for 2014 but the items discussed still apply for 2016.

SoftPlan+ Cloud Services

Additionally you get all of the programs SoftPlan offers such as SoftList, SoftTalk, and reView included for no additional charge. And there are numerous functions only available to Plus subscribers such as automatic export to YouTube when creating animations, export to Google Earth, and export to Sketchup.

Do I use everything that is included in Plus? No. But they are there if I need them. And the ones I do use such as Cloud Sharing really make a huge difference. And the monthly cost is slightly more than my newspaper subscription and less than my cable bill. If I didn't work from home and I was out and about all the time my coffee bill would far exceed the subscription cost.

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
Correction

I appear to have be mistaken. Looking at the SoftPlan+ FAQ page it mentions that Plus includes reView but doesn't say anything about SoftTalk or SoftList. Somehow I had it in my brain that Plus included everything. Sorry for the confusion. In order to have SoftTalk or SoftList you still have to purchase them separately. But once you have purchased them they are updated with each new version. At least that is my current understanding. I haven't verified this with SoftPlan.

jimcrook@live.com
jimcrook@live.com's picture
Another Consideration

One other thing you have to consider is that what you are really debating over is the advantages of going the + ( plus ) route

versus the additional cost.  So if you typically like to keep up to date, if you do the math going to a + ( plus subscription) versus

purchasing each new version update it only works out to about $300 over a two year period, i.e.  $50/month for a + subscription

= $1200 over two years versus purchase a new version every two years $ 900 ( normal version cycle ) that means you are really

only paying $150/yr. extra for the Plus Subscription.    Having all my plans automatically upload to the cloud every time I open and

close them is worth the price difference alone.   Why ..... because now I can take my laptop or any other computer with Softplan on

itfor that matter, anywhere there is an internet connection and I can download the latest copy of a project I'm working on.   Before I

had to use a USB key and copy my project back and forth between my laptop and desktop each time. That alone is worth $150/yr 

to me.

 

JimC

 

Mike Landry
Mike Landry's picture
I agree Bill, there is no way

I agree Bill, there is no way I would want to go back to version 2014 now that

I have been using 2016.